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Top News & Analysis United States

  • Deval Patrick's administration has unveiled a new plan for dealing with the mounting costs associated with the alleged mishandling of evidence at a state drug lab. The plan was announced by Secretary of Administration and Finance Jay Gonzalez after some agencies affected by the crisis missed a Wednesday deadline for submitting cost estimates.

  • NEW YORK-- Procter& Gamble, the world's largest consumer products maker, said Thursday that its net income fell 7 percent on the stronger dollar and restructuring charges, but adjusted results met expectations.

  • HOUSTON-- Noble Energy, while wresting with falling natural gas prices and a hurricane in the Gulf of Mexico, topped Wall Street expectations for the third quarter. The Houston energy producer said Thursday that its net income totaled $221 million, or $1.23 per share, in the July-through-September quarter.

  • WASHINGTON, Oct 25- Raytheon Co, maker of Patriot missiles, radar and other military equipment, reported higher-than-expected quarterly earnings despite a 1 percent drop in revenues, and raised its forecast for 2012 earnings.

  • SAO PAULO, Oct 25- Brazil's jobless rate rose slightly in September but continued near record lows, data showed on Thursday, reinforcing the view that Brazil's tight labor market remains well suited to support an economic recovery.

  • CHICAGO, Oct 25- CME Group Inc, the biggest operator of U.S. futures exchanges, reported a 30.5 percent decline in quarterly profit as investors bought and sold fewer futures and options. Net income fell to $218.9 million, or 66 cents a share, in the quarter, from $315 million, or 95 cents a share, a year earlier, CME said on Thursday.

  • JACKSONVILLE, Fla.-- Rayonier said Thursday that its third-quarter net income dropped 23 percent, pulled down by an interest tax expense while the year-ago period included a tax gain. The forest products company earned $80.6 million, or 62 cents per share, compared with $104.9 million, or 71 cents per share, during the same period a year ago.

  • CARMEL, Ind.-- ITT Educational Services Inc. said Thursday that its third-quarter net income fell 36 percent as enrollment fell amid stricter federal regulations that hold for-profit online schools more accountable for graduation rates and job placement.

  • Oct 25- Canadian oil and gas producer Nexen Inc said it still expects a $15.1 billion takeover bid by China's CNOOC Ltd to close in the current quarter. Ottawa has promised to release a set of clear guidelines for large foreign investments when it announces its decision on the CNOOC takeover bid around Nov. 11.

  • NEW YORK-- The New York Philharmonic announced Wednesday that it is extending the contract of Music Director Alan Gilbert through the 2016-17 season. "Alan Gilbert is an innovative and visionary leader for the New York Philharmonic," said the orchestra's chairman, Gary W. Parr. "

  • HARTFORD, Conn.-- Connecticut's tourism industry is getting a boost from documentary filmmaker Ken Burns. Burns announced Wednesday that he has partnered with a luxury tour group, Tauck Tours of Norwalk, on a redesigned eight-day tour of New England' s "hidden gems," which will include a two-day stop in Hartford.

  • NEW YORK, Oct 25- The outcome of a court hearing set to begin on Thursday will determine whether a major regional healthcare system in Pennsylvania is driven into bankruptcy or will be allowed to seek other suitors after a $475 million merger deal with insurer Highmark Inc crumbled.

  • NEW YORK, Oct 25- U.S. consumers will have to dig deeper into their pockets next year to pay for costlier healthcare, more expensive grocery bills and higher taxes, an extra drag on the country's already slow-moving economy.

  • Andrew Cuomo said state government will put the promotion of beer, wine and liquor made in New York "on steroids" to boost jobs and help the small, yet growing industries. They include promoting New York wine, beer, whisky and brandy at the State Fair.

  • NEW YORK-- Shares of Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. hit a 15- month high Thursday after it reported third-quarter earnings that topped Wall Street's expectations. The Miami company earned $367.8 million, or $1.68 per share, compared with $399 million, or $1.82 per share, a year earlier. Royal Caribbean said it saw strong last-minute bookings and the third quarter.

  • The Energy Department's Energy Information Administration reported that natural gas in storage grew 67 billion cubic feet to 3.843 trillion cubic feet for the week ended Oct. 19. Analysts expected a rise of 63 billion to 67 billion cubic feet, according to a survey by Platts, the energy information arm of McGraw-Hill Cos.

  • LOS ANGELES-- Occidental Petroleum saw third-quarter profit fall 22 percent as an increase in production was offset by lower oil and natural gas prices. Occidental reported net income of $1.38 billion, or $1.69 per share, in the quarter that ended Sept. 30.

  • WHITE PLAINS, N.Y.-- Agribusiness and food company Bunge Ltd.' s third-quarter net income more than doubled as revenue rose on strength in its agribusiness division. Bunge said Thursday that crop supplies need to approach record levels to rebuild stocks. For the period ended Sept. 30, earnings rose to $289 million, or $1.92 per share.

  • WASHINGTON-- Medical device maker Medtronic Inc. helped write and edit medical journal articles attributed to outside physicians, which downplayed the risks of the company's best-selling bone graft, according to a report by Senate investigators.

  • SIOUX FALLS, S.D.-- South Dakota's largest city is welcoming political figures, family and friends in town to mark the life and career of former Democratic U.S. senator and three-time presidential candidate George McGovern, a legend in state's political history who died Sunday at age 90..